03 September 2009

Your Bike is a Total Loss

A couple of days ago I was sitting at my desk at the end of the day (I stay late because there's not enough time between work and school to get home and make it to class on time) when one of the ladies from work knocked on my window and motioned for me to come outside. I went outside and she told me that she'd knocked my motorcycle over. It is a sad thing for a guy when he sees his bike laid over on its side with the kickstand up in the air. I guess she had backed up into the spot where I was parked and the bike tipped over when her car bumped it. There were some fluids leaking out and the handlebar and muffler were banged up as well as some scrapes on the plastic and a bent mirror. The good news was that my frame sliders (plastic pegs that stick out from the bike and protect important mechanical and structural parts) had acted as a tripod along with the handlebar and muffler to keep the damage localized. We got it picked back up, she called her insurance, and I waited. The insurance company called me and set me up to have it towed to the bike shop, and then I waited a little more to see what they would say.

Because of the cost of labor and parts from the manufacturer, even a tip-over like that totaled the bike, mostly cosmetically. So the insurance company could buy the bike from me and I could pay off much of what I owe on it but not have a bike or I could keep the bike with a salvage title and a smaller payment, have the handlebar and maybe the exhaust fixed/replaced, and have a still-functional but cosmetically-damaged bike to commute on. If I took the first option I would not have a bike payment or an insurance payment every month, but I also would likely not be able to purchase another motorcycle. Under the second option I would still have a motorcycle, but the resale value would be nil. Which is somewhat irrelevant to me because I planned on riding this bike until the end of its service life anyway.

The thing that surprised me is how little anger I feel about the whole situation. By now word has gotten around the office and I get a lot of people telling me how angry I should be and that I should really hold it against her for hitting my bike. I think that's a little unprofessional, especially as the insurance company is taking care of things and bad things like that happens to everyone. She apologized and made things right by owning up to it and taking the insurance hit, so why waste time being bitter about it? I don't claim to be a Zen Master, but some stuff you just have to let go because fuming and resentment really only serve to give you headaches and ulcers. I do have to admit that seeing my bike on the ground made me seize up a bit inside, though. Thank goodness for frame sliders; without that extra couple inches of support all the plastic on my bike could have been much worse.


  1. dang that sucks. i would be so embarrassed if i hit someones bike. i always look carefully before parking because lots of marines here own crotch rocket things. But Im pretty sure the guys here wouldnt be as nice as you if i hit their bike...

  2. I almost feel like it happened to me, since I've been living out my bike fantasies through you.

  3. That does suck, but commendations for not getting angry. I mean, it happens, but at the end of the day anger itself rarely actually does anything to serve you.

    plus, she owned up to it. I've been at the tail end of a chain reaction where the starter RAN like a pansy.

  4. I hit someone's car once in the church parking lot. They were in the second ward that was meeting in our building and I had no idea whose car it was. I made a not really noticeable mark on the back of the car, so I drove off in embarrassment. Then my conscience slapped me around and forced me to u-turn and go back to find the owner. It turned out to be someone who was really good friends with my brother Sam, which in turn over shadowed the fact that I had hit his car and he didn't seem bothered by it and we left it at that. Then after my mission, I moved into a ward where he and his family happened to have moved into, lol. We got to know each other pretty well over music and recording, and I'm pretty good friend's with his wife. One day I asked him if he remembered the incident, which he did not, but I'm really glad that I owned up to it. Imagine my chagrin and chastisement in the life to come if I had never fessed up.

  5. Your attitude is great!!! But man I can't believe your bike is totaled. That really messes up a big piece of your life!! Sometimes when bad things happen we don't understand until later that it really was a blessing. I'm sure that is what will happen this time especially because of your great attitude!